Coalition cronies on refugees

The coalition cronies will be off and running today following the
interview in Radio National this am.
Please comment.
They (the cronies & pals) are already using the interview to accuse the Rudd Government. Ofcourse they are overlooking the bleeding obvious. The Howard government policy of interdiction of boats by the Navy and towing them back to
Indonesia is responsible for the legacy cases and for their subsequent
setting out on dangerous journeys to Australia.

The Iraqi man interviewed  has been in Indonesia for 10 years care of
the HOWARD PLAN which was to get the Navy to push the boats back. Howard
policy  – no solution after that – just push them back and pay IOM
millions of dollars to warehouse the people like washing machines!
These people have been recognised by UNHCR as the ridgy- didge real
thing- yes accredited refugees so lets move to the next argument. After
we pushed them back to Indonesia , a struggling economy with 238,000,000
people of their own on 6,000 inhabited islands- what then.

OK we paid to feed and water them and provide shelter but as a 15 yr old
Iraqi girl said to me- “we are not cattle- we are human- we need more in
the life than food and shelter”!

The problem in Indonesia is that these people are not allowed to work,
the children have no access to education- there is no future. There are
Iraqi and Afghan teenagers in Indonesia who have missed 8-10 years of
schooling. Mind you they have taught each other languages and computer
skills. These kids come from a time and place when they had never seen a
computer. Imagine what they could do with formal education.

The bottom line is that HOWARDS HUMAN WAREHOUSING  policy presents the
current government with boats. I will be fair and say- not all boats are
from Legacy cases but some are and this man is saying truthfully what is
happening in Indonesia. The solution at the moment is to round up all
the men, separate them from their wives and children  and put them in
detention in centres all over Indonesia- Macassar, Jakarta and Pantiank.
These guys will soon disappear there.

The real solution is resettlement.

Pamela Curr      Campaign coordinator
Asylum Seeker Resource Centre
12 Batman St
Melbourne 3003
Ph 03 93266006 / Fax 03 93265199

4 thoughts on “Coalition cronies on refugees

  1. Open hearts to refugees says:

    Open hearts to refugees
    Jennifer Eliot

    Thursday, May 7, 2009

    © The Cairns Post

    A CAIRNS skipper is urging people to think twice before condemning asylum seekers, after a first-hand encounter with an unseaworthy vessel carrying nearly 60 Afghanis.

    The plea comes as Australian authorities on Monday intercepted the eleventh boat this year.

    Paul Smith, the skipper of The Lady Sandra, an offshore oil rig support ship working off the Broome coast in Western Australia, came to the rescue of an overloaded boat on April 25.

    He said the encounter had changed his view about asylum seekers after seeing the “sheer desperation” and “personal risks taken” by those on board.

    “Regardless of personal feelings on how refugee boats and their unfortunate and desperate human cargo should be treated, the plight of 56 persons onboard a small and unseaworthy vessel cannot be ignored,” he said.

    “The crew of The Lady Sandra were quick to respond and offer assistance as soon as possible. All crew onboard were touched by this experience and were moved by the plight of these people who could be so desperate to set sail with so very little.

    “These people did not have suitcases or bags and their worldly possessions were what they were wearing.”

    Mr Smith said the cramped boat had no toilets or safety equipment, little food and water, inadequate navigation equipment and was 120 miles off course but had no communication facilities.

    He said it had nearly run out of fuel and it was leaking badly.

    “Their desperate situation is a tragedy and before we condemn the refuge problem on our northern shores, we need to fully understand the plight of these people,” he said.

    “Once we saw people in that situation, it really makes you think differently.

    “I’m sure there are some crooks trying to get into Australia but most would be genuine people seeking freedom.

    “We need to try and understand these people and not condemn them.”

  2. Doing it the right way? says:

    Dear All,

    Todays story about Amir Hashimi and his family in ‘The Age’ needs your support.

    Mr Hashimis’s struggle to get his family to Australia illustrates how punitive and unjust the Howard era policy was.

    When he tried to do it “the right way” he had doors slammed in his face leaving him no alternative but to seek another way in.

    From Pamela Curr

    1. Cost of bribes says:

      It was interesting to hear refugees say on SBS program Insight that the ‘right way’ is more costly and more corrupted than the ‘illegal’ route. THe UNHCR representative quickly denied claims of corruption and bribery.

      Why does refuge from violence and horror has to be subject to market conditions where only the refugees with money make it to Australia because of the cost of bribes through UNHCR?

      Why don’t we hear more about people who come by plane?

      Ian Curr

  3. Refugee reality says:

    Next time Sharman Stone starts bleating about ‘Real Refugees in the camps in Africa’ being the ones we should help, we could remind her that camps are very dangerous places and many refugees choose not to go into them for exactly this reason (see

    Even UN personnel admit that they are unable to protect people in the camps. This accords with the information given to us by relatives here who live with the fear that their family members will be killed before they can get them to safety.

    Even approaching the UNHCR office in some places is extremely dangerous. Once they have been interviewed and given a card – what then?

    As they walk out of the Ndjamena office onto the streets in Chad, young men are grabbed by Darfur rebel forces and forced into militia to fight or by Chadian forces and imprisoned or worse.

    Is it any wonder that refugees have to help them selves to safety.

    Pamela Curr
    Campaign Coordinator
    Asylum Seeker Resource Centre (ASRC)
    12 Batman Street Melbourne 3003
    Tel 03 93266066/ fax 0393265199/mob 0417517075

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